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China’s pestered private sector given new lease on life

As China reopens the world’s No 2 economy, the biggest winner could be a beleaguered private sector that’s had a rough few years under President Xi Jinping.

Since 2019, the Chinese leader has been carrying out an assertive crackdown on financial risk in the property market. In 2020, the Communist Party stomped on internet platform companies to remind tech founders who’s boss.

And, of course, Xi’s “zero-Covid” lockdowns have driven economic growth to 30-year lows, causing many foreign investors to pivot elsewhere.

Now, Xi’s team suggests a variety of business-friendly policies will take the lead in efforts to boost both gross domestic product (GDP) and investor confidence. This renewed focus on supporting the private sector emerged from a two-day Central Economic Work Conference that concluded on December 16.

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